This weekend I competed at Fit Factor, Body Power…. some of you will know what I am talking about, and some will read this and think, what is this then? What is it you may well ask …. it’s a Fitness Modelling Competition, judged on physique, stage presence, confidence, branding, suitability & appropriateness of your look for you and so much more.
I entered it for many reasons which you can read on my own blog, along with my competition review here: http://www.kimingleby.co.uk/blog/uncategorized/best-good-enough-yet-enough
What I wanted to write about here are my thoughts and tips which may help you to achieve your goal. I think often as a Trainer we are seen as (hopefully) someone to motivate and inspire our clients to become the very best version of themselves. In essence, to Unlock your Full Potential, which has been Energised mission statement since we founded in 2004. I also think that clients can sometimes think that it’s just easy for us, and we don’t understand where they are at. I would agree, everyone is different and you can never fully understand where anyone is ‘at’ unless you are walking in their shoes. But what you can do, is support them, make them believe in themselves, believe in the tiny possibilities of change with courage, believe in the opportunities for growth and believe that anything, with patience, time and commitment is possible. Yet, nearly always you will have to get uncomfortable and changes things to make that happen…..
From all the questions I have been asked, and the learnings I have gained from competing at Fit Factor here are my Top 7 Reflections …
1. Yes I Ate. A Lot.
Definitely more than I usually eat, and I had carbohydrates in all my meals aside from the evening. I ate oats, sweet potato, lots of fish, steak, chicken, turkey, loads of greens, peppers, blueberries, always felt full of energy and well. Eating less, cutting out food groups and avoiding cooking from fresh I don’t believe works long term. Yet, its about understanding your motivation or triggers around food and slowly creating a plan of change to move towards what you want with consistency. And remembering that one meal or day getting it ‘wrong’ is not the end of the world, just re balance and keep on track.
2. Yes I put on weight. But Lost Bodyfat and ‘appear’ lighter
It’s a bit of a weird one, particularly with how the media portray things (but I am pleased to see its changing at the moment to fit and strong being on trend for now, yea!). Even whilst I don’t go on scales, taking photos and weighing yourself is necessary to compete in this type of competition. However you look, that is still a challenge on your confidence and self esteem, especially if you avoided all this as a child. Over the time, trusting myself and the coach I worked with, I gained 2.5kg and lost 7% bodyfat, increased in muscle mass, my legs size wise were ‘bigger’ but looked ‘smaller’ I am told, my waist reduced, chest and shoulders increased. I’m only telling you this, not because it matters, but because maybe it’s interesting. Learn to listen to your body and how you want to feel and look, then work hard to make it happen.
3. My muscle definition improved.
My feedback from anything I have done following the Global PT to Watch Award at the of 2013 from Life Fitness has been, your legs and bum are not defined or lean enough. It’s relative okay, but that’s the feedback I was getting. In my head, I thought I’ve always had legs like this, I rode horses, I cycled etc… I don’t think they will change (limitation on identity)… then, shake it up Kim, do what you have never done before, change your nutrition, change your training. I changed my mindset, I changed my focus, I changed my training and I changed my belief. The result, in time, they are beginning to change. You have to give attention to the ‘part’ you don’t ‘like’, or it will never change. Many people say to me, I hate my stomach.. well, start to like it, massage it, look at it, work towards it becoming your friend. I know it sounds easy, I know it sounds weird… but after a few months you will notice a difference, which surely is better than still not liking your stomach when you are at your great old age. Learn to like and accept all the bits that make you, you, see it as a goal itself 🙂
4. I lifted heavy (for me) weights 6 times a week
I have always trained and lifted weights, 2-3 times a week which for endurance is unusual, I thought I lifted heavy but in reality I didn’t actually test myself. For 6 weeks, I lifted heavy, trained smart, switched my routine up with the support of a coach who specialised in this area, and committed to the programme. By week 3 I was 5 kg heavier than I have ever been and the body fat was still there. I tell you this because when you change your training your body needs time to adapt, grow, change and recover. This all changed by 7 weeks, but I had to stay committed in the middle. The strength training 100% has helped my limited endurance training (due to my medical condition) and has improved my posture, core strength and confidence. I am enjoying the challenging of lifting and ‘playing’ with the boys weights, whilst still looking feminine, it can be done. Give it a go, just make sure you understand good technique and give yourself rest cycles in your training programme.
5. I had an uncomfortable goal
Doing Fit Factor was something totally new to me, new environment, new people, new challenges. Yet, this is what makes you a wiser person, this is where you learn and grow. I have always put myself into situations and challenges that will teach me things. I don’t know why, it’s just me. So the thought of getting on stage and ‘posing’ scared the sh@t out of me! But it was the only thing that was going to make me work on my confidence, learn stage presence and hopefully, become a stronger, wiser role model for my business and clients. I could have let my conditions and medical state control and limit who I am this year, instead, I chose to find something I believed would compliment my return to full health, give me a focus and challenge me to practise what I teach. If you find yourself saying limiting things, that’s cool… but just ask yourself, what do I need to do to change this, and if you are unsure, ask someone or ask me, I’ll help you work it out… then you just have to choose if you want to do it or not…. when you are ready, and the time is right, you will know.
6. I practised, effectively, a lot.
I did exactly what I tell my clients, I wrote down numerous mind maps on how & what do I need to do, to be my very best on the day. Who represents excellence in what they do, and inspires me to be my very best for this challenge. Who do I want to talk to to increase my confidence & teach me skills to be my best. I surrounded myself with those people, and committed to practising mentally, physically daily to be the best I could be on the day. Afterwards, I wrote my learnings down so I can improve in whatever I chose to do again in the future.
7. I met amazing people & had fun
I think whatever you do, whatever the outcome, reflecting on how it added value to your life, who you met along the way, who supported you and what fun you had is so important. At the end of the day, we have one life, we don’t know how many days we will have. So I like to wake up with the intention of making the day count, in the way that I have chosen, so that could be to relax and do little, or to make some big changes, and to always aim to make at least one person feel and believe in themselves a little bit more by being in my company. When you change things, some people around you won’t get it, that doesn’t matter, they will always be there for you, just maybe not for this goal. Yet as long as your goal, fits with your positive motivation, values and beliefs… it will add value to your life, however you do, and in return it will positively ripple into all areas and people in your life.
I’ve learned a lot in my life, some amazing highs and some big learnings and challenges from an early age, yet I can say without doubt, the challenges are where I have learned the most, they have made me a wiser, kinder person, the amazing highs are like the stars, they sparkle bright… but you need the darkness around them to see them.
So if you are in a good place or a challenging place as you read this, take courage… the journey of life is a ride, the journey of a competition is like a snap shot of life, there will be highs and there will be lows, but whatever happens, you will be okay and you are a wonderful, good enough person, remember this as you read this …. now go and kick ass, enjoy the moments, have fun, laugh and commit to that goal 🙂
I’m off to read the info for Sierra Leone Marathon, all being well I leave on Wednesday early to fly to Freetown, work with Street Child in Makeni for 3 days and then run the marathon…. this, with my current state will be the most challenging, humbling experience I know… yet what I will learn and bring back for you all, I hope is inspiration, stories, courage and a medal!!
I am aiming to raise enough money to build 2 schools for Street Children, you can donate if you would like here, and in advance I send you the biggest thank YOU: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/energisedperformance and read more about my preparation here: http://www.kimingleby.co.uk/blog/uncategorized/live-magnificent-life-make-difference-tips